US cops charged with murder of homeless man

Tony Gosling tony at
Mon Jan 12 23:48:15 GMT 2015

Albuquerque police officers charged with murder of homeless camper James Boyd

This Tuesday, March 25, 2014 file photo hundreds of people march 
north on Fifth Street to the headquarters of the Albuquerque Police 
Department protesting the latest police killing of James Boyd in the 
northeast foothills of Albuquerque.
The Associated Press
Associated Press on January 12, 2015 at 11:07 AM
YE-Year in Review New Mexico

Two Albuquerque police officers have been charged with murder in the 
March killing of a homeless camper, a shooting that generated 
sometimes violent protests around the city and sparked a federal 
investigation, prosecutors said Monday.
SWAT team member Dominique Perez and former Detective Keith Sandy 
will each face a single count of open murder in the death of 
38-year-old James Boyd, Second District Attorney Kari Brandenburg 
said. Open murder allows prosecutors to pursue either first-degree or 
second-degree murder charges.
Police said Perez and Sandy fatally shot Boyd, who was holding a 
knife, during an hourslong standoff in the foothills of the Sandia 
Mountains. Video from an officer's helmet camera showed Boyd, who had 
struggled with mental illness, appearing to surrender when officers 
opened fire.
Sam Bregman, lawyer for Sandy, told The Associated Press that the 
decision was "unjustified" and said Sandy did nothing wrong.
"To the contrary, he followed his training and probably saved his 
fellow officer's life," Bregman said.
Luis Robles, an attorney for Perez, said, "Sadly, this day has come. 
Regardless, I am confident that the facts will vindicate Officer 
Perez's actions in this case."
Brandenburg said in a statement that the date for a preliminary 
hearing for the two has not yet been set.
The Boyd shooting -- and more than three dozen other police shootings 
since 2010 -- sparked a series of protests, including one that forced 
authorities to fire tear gas canisters at violent demonstrators and 
another that shut down a City Council meeting.
The FBI is investigating the shooting, but federal authorities have 
not said if officers will face federal charges.
City officials recently signed an agreement with the U.S. Justice 
Department to revamp its police agency after a harsh report over 
excessive force. Under the agreement, Albuquerque police must provide 
better training for officers and dismantle troubled units.
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